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Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

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The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

Egypt: 20 defendants sentenced to death in Kerdasa massacre re-trial

Court also orders life imprisonment for 80, 15-year term for 34, 10 years for minor and acquits 21

The Cairo Criminal court sentenced on Sunday 20 defendants to death during their retrial in the case known as "Kerdasa massacre", according to local media.

The death penalty had already been issued in April but ordered the referral of the papers of those sentenced to death to the Grand Mufti for consultation. According to state-owned media Al-Ahram, the court sentenced on Sunday 80 other defendants to life in prison, another 34 defendants to 15 years, a minor to 10 years, while it acquitted 21 defendants.

The case includes 156 defendants, whom in the 1st trial had received either death or imprisonment sentences on charges of storming in Kerdasa police station in Giza, killing 12 police officers, initiation of killing 10 others, destroying the police office and burning a number of police vehicles in August 2013.

After the 1st trial, the Appeal Court had refuted 14 death sentences in the same case and revoked a 10-year prison sentence for another defendant, thus ordering a re-trial.

The storming of the station took place shortly after the dispersal of the Rabaa Al-Adaweya sit-in by the armed forces in August 2013, following the ouster of former Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.

Since 2013, a militant campaign targeting police and army has escalated since the ouster of Morsi, killing several security forces in the Sinai Peninsula, Cairo, and the Nile Delta.

Source: Daily News Egypt, July 2, 2017

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